A sex worker collective has compiled a dossier of cases that it has fought over the last few years showing how Brexit is affecting migrant sex workers from the EU.
The English Collective of Prostitutes’ dossier, Sex workers are getting screwed by Brexit, includes examples of women being targeted by police for arrest and deportation despite having the right to reside in the UK and reports of violence against women being dismissed.
Because sex work is not recognised as work, migrant sex workers are disadvantaged when applying for settled status in the UK – many often can’t show a track record of employment or produce other documentation. Women point to the racism and other discrimination they face when applying for other jobs and complain that their contribution to the survival of families is disparaged and dismissed.
Letters and a rights sheet, produced by the ECP, which includes precedents establishing that sex workers can claim self-employed status, have been widely distributed on the street and in premises.
Liliana Gashi commented:
“Since the Brexit vote, racist attacks on migrant sex workers have gone up, particularly against those of us who work on the street. We work for a living like other workers and our families and sometimes whole communities depend on the money we earn. How can the police then say we are not workers? We ask that trade unions and others concerned with the rights of workers and migrants, help us establish that sex work is work so we can organise alongside other workers for protection from exploitation and abuse.”
English Collective of Prostitutes
020 7482 2496